Kering has made a pledge to fight sexual violence on college campuses through its Kering Foundation. On Monday evening, the luxury conglomerate toasted its two new charitable initiatives to aid in the cause at the French Consular Building on Fifth Avenue.

Laurent Claquin, head of Americas at Kering, Marie-Claire Daveu, Kering’s chief sustainability officer, and Bertrand Lortholary, Consul General of France in New York, addressed an intimate crowd on the prevalence of these crimes and how they intend to help stop them.

“Women are a social and economic force and yet they suffer in staggering numbers from violence and abuse,” said Claquin. “I was personally shocked to learn that college campuses are among the most dangerous places for women in the United States. One-in-five women is sexually assaulted during her college years. I am sure that many of us in this room tonight know a young woman who will be returning to school in the fall. That means that someone’s daughter, sister, niece or friend will be at risk for sex assault,” he added.

On Monday the Kering Foundation announced that it had partnered with Generation Progress’ “It’s On Us” initiative to help educate college students on the topic of sexual violence.

In addition, We End Violence was unveiled as the winner of the foundation’s 2015 Social Entrepreneur Award. At Monday night’s cocktails, Daveu presented the social business’s principals Carol Mosely and Jeff Bucholtz with their rewards – 30,000 euros and a mentorship with a Kering executive (this year, with Tara McRae, Puma’s senior vice president of brand and marketing).

Upon accepting the award, Mosely addressed the room, saying: “When I began working in this field in mid-1980s this was not a topic anyone talked about. We couldn’t beg people to listen to us talk about this, and over the years of working primarily with students and also out in the community, I knew a day would come eventually when we would have wider recognition of problems with sexual violence and have broader understanding of what that meant.”

Mosely added: “It’s an amazing thing for me to have worked in this as long as I have and to see the progress – which seems fast to a lot of people – but is built on many decades of work.”

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